Bass of the Week: Brooks Grabbird

Brooks Grabbird Bass

Last year, bass builder and Gibson enthusiast Rob van den Broek built a bass that combined elements of a Thunderbird and a Telecaster. Now, he’s revealed his latest creation called the Brooks Grabbird. Van den Broek, who wrote a fantastic book on Gibson basses, took aspects of the 1964 Gibson Thunderbird II and mixed them with the 1973 Gibson Grabber.

“[It has a] nine ply neck-through construction just like the Thunderbird, but with maple strips veneer in between the mahogany instead of walnut,” the builder explains. “The nickel covered humbucker resembles the pickup of the sixties Thunderbird, but the sliding mechanism in the raised middle section refers to the Grabber, of course.”

Hear the bass and check out the sliding pickup in his demo video:

The bassist also made a few adjustments to help its playability. “The shape of the headstock echoes the Grabber headstock, but the ebony veneer on top is a nod to the Thunderbird headstock,” van den Broek writes. “The shorter headstock and the Ultra-lite tuners make sure this fantastic bass doesn’t suffer any neck dive!”

Brooks Grabbird Bass Specs:

Construction:Neck Through
Body:Figured Mahogany Body Wings
Neck:Nine-piece Mahogany/Maple
Nut:Handcut Bone
Frets:20 Jumbo
Pickguard:Three ply white-black-white
Pickup:Sliding Thunderbird Pickup
Volume pot:Bourns 500 kOhms logarithmic SRT
Tone pot:Bourns 500 kOhms logarithmic SRT
Tuners:Hipshot Ultralite
Bridge:Wide travel Thunderbird bridge plus tailstop
Finish:Cherry Gloss Transparent Acrylic
Other:Ebony faceplate on headstock, Kemet capacitor 47 nF paper insulation, Spokewheel trussrod

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Share your thoughts

  1. Wow! I feel immensely honoured to see my latest build is Bass of the Week.
    Thank you guys.

  2. This bass is my kinda bass,looks sound and build to kill.Wonder the price?/